I'm a professional CRT recycler with experience with the companies in the article. The leaded silicate in CRT glass can actually be valuable as a fluxing agent. It's basically the same as anglesite, the leaded quartz that's mined worldwide. But because of e-waste alarmism (e.g. original article said they were full of "toxic gases", still says the CRTs "explode"), the primary copper and lead smelting industries stopped accepting the material. I personally managed several hundred tons of cullet from one on the companies in the article, but the smelter didn't like the regulators and environmentalists poking around, or the red tape. So they went back to mining lead and silica from the ground. Here's an article I wrote about the "no good deed goes unpunished" aspects of CRT glass recycling. resource-recycling.com/pdfs/Ingenthron0316e.pdf Previously I wrote one - also published in Motherboard - about how Asian refurbishers stopped buying CRTs from America for the same reason (they were being cast as "primitive wire burners). motherboard.vice.com/2011/3/26/e-waste-recycling-exports-are-good
A good rule of thumb is that the worst forms of recycling are better for the environment than the best forms of hard rock metal mining. But "waste" policy says the opposite, waste is a "liability" for the consuming industry, mined material is subsidized.